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May 16, 2020

"This page-turning story has twists and turns that keep you wanting to find out what happens next.." - D R

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On the Homefront

It’s hard to believe we’re already halfway through May! As I look out the window this morning, I see the sun has put in an appearance. We’ve had a cold snap for the last few days, but I think spring may have finally arrived. In fact, it was almost warm enough yesterday to go outside without a jacket, and that’s saying a lot for us Londoners (Canada, that is).

With the warmer weather, the dogs are taking longer walks. Daisy seems to be thriving with the change in season, and despite a 6.5 km walk this morning, she still wanted to play with her sister! Scientists need to figure out a way to harness all that energy. Then again, she does sleep the rest of the morning away, so maybe it’s not the best thing to adapt for humans.

But what’s wrong with an occasional afternoon nap? I’m reminded of my father, who used to watch TV with his eyes closed. Convinced that he was asleep, we would change the channel, only to be told he was awake.

Daisy and Tilly thought that maybe one more free book might just be what you needed!

The Frozen Flame Prequels: The path to one's destiny is never easy! Athgar and Natalia are destined to become great mages, yet everyone has to start somewhere. In this prequel to Ashes, the first book in The Frozen Flame series, discover who they were before magic chose them.

The Awakening: For Stanislav, it's a mage hunter's dream, an easy job on the edge of town. At first glance, Natalia is nothing more than a peasant child, though word of her magical powers has come to light.

Now all he needs to do is confirm the rumours, grab the girl, and hand her off. What could go wrong?

Into the Fire: All Athgar needs to do is make the kill! To his people, tradition is everything, but to him, it feels like a prison. Every day is the same, until the Orcs arrive, offering him a way out.

Now he must make a choice, follow in his father's footsteps, or forge his own path.

Pick up your free copy of The Frozen Flame Prequel today to learn the origins of these powerful mages!

Read The Frozen Flame Prequels for FREE!
My Side Stories - How They Come About!

As I was putting the finishing touches on Temple Knight this week, a thought occurred to me, well several if the truth be told. I have all these interesting secondary characters sitting around, and I wondered what might become of them. The result of this is that I ended up with a rough outline for another story, a ‘spin-off’ if you will. This has happened before, as evidenced by the Mercerian Tales series, so it shouldn’t be a surprise to me, but what I found remarkable was how much of a story I managed to type out.

Not only that, but it folds nicely into the larger epic tale that is evolving over all of my series. I will likely write it at some point in the future, but it hinges on events that have yet to unfold, and I’d have to wait until the completion of Temple Captain this winter. In the meantime, it will sit, waiting on my computer, tempting me with its possibilities.

Temple Knight holds several interesting characters, so who knows, I may end up releases a collection of short stories based on this series. I shall have to give some thought as to how they would be named. After all, they can’t be called Mercerian Tales, they take place on the continent (and even beyond in one case.)

Paul's Entertainment Fact of the Week

On May 16, 1929, the Academy Awards made its debut. A select group of 250 people gathered at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood to receive awards in a ceremony hosted by Douglas Fairbanks Sr. The movie industry was in a time of great upheaval, for The Jazz Singer, the first talking picture had just been released, leaving the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, (the people behind the Oscars) to make a difficult choice. In the end, they felt that talkies and silent films should not compete with each other, meaning that this revolutionary movie was ineligible for an award.

The first official winner of Best Movie was Wings, a silent film about pilots during the great war (it wasn’t called World War One until much later). During this same ceremony, they decided to award Charlie Chaplin with an honorary award. He was, at the time, a nominee in the categories of Best Actor, Best Writer, and Best Comedy Director, but these were pulled so that he could receive the honorary award. This would be the last time this giant of the Silver Screen would receive an Oscar until he returned to the US to receive a second in 1971.

It just goes to show the effect that internal politics had on Hollywood. The Jazz Singer was a maverick of sorts, and Chaplin was said to be unpopular among the Hollywood elite. Both were spurned, yet both left a lasting legacy.

I had a great Facebook Live session this past Monday. Not only did I answer questions that were sent in, but I also read the first chapter of Sword of the Crown.

On Monday, May 25, 2020 at my usual time of 5:30 pm EST. I will be reading the first chapter of Mercerian Tales: The Making of a Man, which mirrors Sword, but with some very distinct differences!

Work in Progress Update

Temple Knight is moving inexorably toward its finale, with the stage now set for a titanic struggle that will determine who dominates in the Shimmering Sea. As the story approaches the end, I am taking time to consider the fate of the many interesting characters that now inhabit this new series. And just like in Heir to the Crown, there are characters that you are introduced in book one that may not reappear until book four or five, so you can rest assured that I will not be tempted to kill them all off as occurs in some fantasy series. I also have to look to the future and the continuation of Sister Charlaine’s remarkable career.

Of course, if you have read The Frozen Flame series, you know at least one who survives, for Sister Cordelia features prominently in Book Two, Embers, a story that takes place some years after the events of Temple Knight. Just because I’ll have penned the epilogue (or should I say typed) doesn’t mean I’ll be done with it, thoug., I still have edits and a read-through to look for inconsistencies and errors. It’s amazing, even in this age of spell checkers and grammar tools, how much can get by you.

What’s next? There’s still some debate about that. I will either be starting on Fury of the Crown (Heir to the Crown: Book Eight) or Flames (The Frozen Flame: Book Three). And there’s always the chance I might write a short story, as I often find these work well as a ‘palate cleanser’ before switching series.

Until next time, Happy reading!

Author Spotlight!

Check out these featured books that are free, discounted, or new releases.
These authors are returning the favour by sharing my books with their readers.

Chains of Blood: He thought he was born Rylan Marshall...until he found out he wasn’t. 

Rylan was attacked, his young son murdered, and his baby daughter taken. But his assailant left him with two gifts: the gift of magic...and an oath to darkness. 

Gil Archer is the son of a legend and one of the most powerful battle mages in the Lyceum. He is sent on a mission to recover Rylan, but ends up on a far more dangerous path. And war is coming for them both. 

Will Rylan use his newfound power to make a stand, or will his oath to darkness guide him to the enemy?

The Knights of Dragonwatch: Led by dragons, the Emperor’s vast army conquers every nation in its path…

Jarryd is a young man with a secret. He sees demons. The visions have plagued him since he witnessed a traumatic event as a small boy. As the visions grow ever more powerful, Jarryd sets out on a journey to find answers at Knights Keep, the ancestral home of the Dragonwatch Knights.

Can Jarryd overcome the demons within himself and defeat the Emperor in time? Or will the Dragon Queen escape her prison and ravage the cosmos once again?

Stolen Luck: After an Age of Silence, The old gods stir.  One man is listening. Clever and devout, Haki lives by the prophecies that speak of the gods' return even though no one takes it seriously. 

A whisper grows in the back of his mind and consumes him. The time is near. The gods are speaking to him. He believes only someone that is truly devout should be the one to welcome the gods back into the world.

Torn by the two conflicting allegiances, Haki has to make an impossible choice. Will he choose House Charam and risk the wrath of the gods themselves? Or will he choose the gods and face the ghosts of his betrayed ancestors?

Inheritance: Prince Cory’s inheritance could kill him. A sword possessed by a spirit, a world of warriors and magic, and a war without end are now his… 

Cory’s life is changed forever after his grandfather’s death when their enemy strikes at the heart of their kingdom. With the darkest of magic at work, the survival of the royal line and the souls of all in his kingdom are at stake. 

Can Cory take up his grandfather’s enchanted blade, become the new general Valendo desperately needs and do the one thing his grandfather never could? --- End the war.

A Monk's Tale: Cedric is a respected monk at the Ridderzaal monastery. But before he became a man of the cloth, he traveled the land, fighting trolls alongside dwarves and giants, living among the fearsome Krigares, and studying with elves, wizards and Shenn Frith shamans. 

This novelette provides a back story for one of your favorite characters from The Crafter Chronicles. It is a great standalone read as an introduction to the world of Matthew B. Berg, or as a companion piece to his trilogy begun with The Crafter's Son. (There are no spoilers in here if you haven't yet begun the series!)

Featured Book Deals & Giveaways

While you wait for the release of my next book, here are some great stories for your TBR pile!

More Giveaways & Deals!
Forgotten Magic BookFair
Magic and Rogues Giveaway
Something New to Read Book Giveaway!
Free Fantasy eBooks
Marvelous May Giveaway
Page-turning Sci-Fi & Fantasy
The Best Free Short Stories
Binge-Worthy BoxSets!
Starlight Sci-Fi & Fantasy BookFair
Fantastical Tales May Giveaway

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